Charlton AthleticSport

Summer signing still a “long way away” from being back available for Charlton Athletic

Charlton manager Dean Holden says that Mandela Egbo is not close to a first-team return.

The summer signing from Swindon Town suffered a serious quad injury in early November.

“Mandela is still a good while away, we won’t see him any time soon,” Holden told the South London Press. “He’s progressing fine but still a long, long way away yet from featuring.”

Striker Chuks Aneke was set to be involved in the matchday squad for last weekend’s 3-1 win over Portsmouth but pulled out in the warm-up.

Aneke had come off with a hamstring complaint not long after being introduced as a second-half substitute against Brighton in the EFL Cup.

The 29-year-old has made 14 appearances this season but missed the opening few months with a calf issue.

“Chuks is further investigations day by day,” said Holden. “We’re looking at the reasons he is feeling these sensations. It’s not an easy thing to manage, but we need to make sure we get him right.

Chuks Aneke
Picture: Kyle Andrews

“He was declared fit at the weekend and just felt something at the back end of the warm up.

“Not great for Chuks on the back of the Brighton game, and not great for us in terms of preparation. Daniel Kanu was ready to go, so no big deal. But we do need to get to the bottom of that, to make sure we get him back fit and that he stays back fit. It’s day to day, there’s no timescale on that.

“It’s been stop-start for him. Chuks is as frustrated as anybody.”

Goalkeeper Joe Wollacott has been out since November after breaking his finger.

It cost the Ghana international the chance to represent his country at the World Cup.

“He’s due to see the specialist at the back end of this week,” said Holden. “Then we’ll be guided by that.

“Hopefully it is as it should be, in terms of the healing. Then there will be a small procedure to remove the wire from the finger. Hopefully it heals as quickly as it can and we can get him back up to speed. He’s going to be a couple of weeks away yet.

“All on track, as far as I’m aware.”

MAIN PICTURE: PAUL EDWARDS

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